Tag Archives: David_Allen

Starting over: GTD and other organizing strategies

I realized last night, the best way to start applying a new system is to just start completely over. I really don’t have anything so pressing that I’m going to be in big trouble if I forget it, nor is there anything I won’t be able to find if I tuck it away for the moment.
That said I cleared out all my old notecards, papers, etc. I’ve stuck three index cards in my pocket labelled: Next Actions, Projects, @waiting (and a NOTES card too). I’m hoping to take the advice of the GTD system in a sort of dumbed down format and simply focus on putting single actions I can take on the Next Action card and list anything that takes more then one step on the Projects card.

I’ll let you know how the system goes.

A “weekly” update podcast of Trying to Follow

Unfortunately, I haven’t done this in a while. I try to summarize the last two weeks post in this podcast, and you can see the long list below. Take a listen and if you like anything then find and read the link to the article below.

or download here.

  • What a church should look like… (0)
  • Writing can be hard to do (0)
  • 24: Season 2: This show is darn addicting. (0)
  • In the news today… (1)
  • I bought a bike… (1)
  • An explanation of that magazine’s name (1)
  • Anyone own access 2003? (0)
  • Laptop’s for the developing world (2)
  • Why most guys should read Ms. Magazine and B**** (1)
  • Longest Night (0)
  • Gentrification: a Case Study of Cabrini-Green (1)
  • Quick thoughts on gentrification: It’s not good. (2)
  • Podcasting might be returning… (0)
  • I like free stuff. Music downloads are a treat. (0)
  • Statcounter doesn’t seem to be working… (1)
  • Landmines: More serious then you might think (0)
  • The New Iraq (1)
  • a Biblical and Christian Approach to Immigration (0)
  • Save Darfur (0)
  • The “What if?” of Cinderella Man (0)
  • GTD: The first step is getting to Ready (2)
  • Google Notebook: you clip the web (0)
  • If your cool you’ll check out slickrun.exe (1)
  • Why go to college when you can blog instead? (2)
  • Download your Facebook friends with Profilicious (1)
  • What’s happened to “Women’s Rights”? (0)
  • I’d go bananas if life was without bananas (0)
  • File folders and Paper vs. My granola soul (2)
  • Free Phone Calls from your Computer to a landline (1)
  • Question: What is with “Grills”? (0)
  • The Constant Gardener: there’s truth in it. (1)
  • USANA is worth considering (1)
  • Question: Why do most people at the DMV appear to be low income? (0)
  • Logo design contest (0)
  • No Gas Day 2006, May 22nd (0)
  • Socially Conscience Children’s Books (4)
  • Testing a new look (1)
  • Questions series… Coming soon (0)
  • It’s cheap, but is it legal? (1)
  • Have I encouraged you? (0)
  • GTD: The first step is getting to Ready

    I’ve browsed/read through the entire book and system of Getting Things Done and realize there is a crucial first step I really need to make. David Allen, the author, suggests that you set aside two full days to do this step, and though I’ve planned on using a full weekend, I don’t think it’s going to happen (especially not at work).
    The 1st step to really being able to fully implement the system is getting to Ready. Allen suggests taking literally everything on or in your desk and putting it in your inbox (exceptions are: supplies, reference material, decorations and equipment). Then, you take everything out of your head and place it in your inbox by simple writing down each item and putting it in your inbox. He’s even got a four page list of trigger words that might help you think of other incomplete items to write down.
    After placing everything in your inbox, you must then process it, one item at a time, through your new system, into an appropriate place (you’ll have to read the book more, or watch for future post to learn more of the system) where you’ll be able to Get Things Done. And the stickler is that you must go through your entire inbox until it’s empty (He said a lot of people have stacks and stacks of stuff).
    If you can manage getting through those two steps, putting it all in and then processing all of it, then you’ve gotten to Ready. For those, like me with less time to do this all in one sitting, I’d suggest putting in and processing as you go, but make it your top priority to do it until you’ve gone through everything.

    applying GTD: It’s harder then I thought

    When I decided I wanted to implement some form of organizational system I thought it was going to be easy. I’d just read a book, follow the step by step instructions and ‘viola!’ suddenly my life was organized and happy. Well, that has not been the case.
    I got this cool workflow diagram off of David Allen’s website (it was free, let me know if you want me to just email you a copy). Basically the diagram explains the whole book, but in a whole lot less time. The system is all there right in front of you. The problem is how you choose to set it up for your unique situation. None of the organizing things I’ve looked at seem uniquely tweaked to my job and my duties.
    It’s so easy to continue just doing things in what ever old way you do them. Trying something new is a challenge. Usually, I like the way that I have things set-up, but it always gets to the point that I realize I could probably use a better system then I currently have.

    Any advice for the disgruntled organizer?


    Notes on GTD (Getting Things Done)

    So, I’ve had a desire to be more organized and I’ve come across (online and at my mom’s recommendation) David Allen’s Getting Things Done.
    It seems like he has a really good system so I’m reading the book right now. My hope is that my notes will be simple and straightforward enough to you and me so that I don’t have to go back and reread the book. For now I’d suggest checking the book out of the library or if you have to get it on Amazon.
    Getting Things Done : The Art of Stress-Free Productivity